20 September 2017

Morocco: FM Stresses Pressing Need for International Cooperation to Defeat Terrorism

New York — Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita stressed, on Wednesday in New York, the pressing need for cooperation within governments and at the international level to defeat terrorism and violent extremism.

"Each dismantled cell and thwarted terrorist attack is further proof that cooperation within governments and at the international level is not just an option, but a strong imperative in our quest to defeat terrorism and violent extremism," said Bourita at the 8th ministerial meeting of the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF), chaired by Morocco and the Netherlands.

"It is essential that we persist in our joint mobilization and continue to stand together in a spirit of unity and solidarity," he said.

"We cannot emphasize more on the fact that this global menace requires a global response, and absolutely no country can claim ability to cope alone with the manifestations of terrorism," he said, noting that this global menace requires a global response, and absolutely no country can claim ability to cope alone with the manifestations of terrorism.

Bourita underlined that "we must also fully engage all relevant stakeholders - government services, non-governmental organizations, civil society, media, the private sector, Internet providers, etc... - along the lines of a "whole of society" approach."

He added that the primary objective remains to support and revitalize the implementation of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and relevant Security Council resolutions, as well as GCTF's good practices and recommendations.

"In this context, we welcome the reform of the United Nations counter-terrorism architecture and the establishment of the United Nations Office for Counter-Terrorism," he said.

"In addition, and in line with the inclusive approach advocated by the GCTF, we have decided to expand the geographical scope of its two Regional Working Groups, which will now work to strengthen and develop capacities in East and West Africa regions," the minister noted.

"Our decision emanated from the observation of the alarmingly developing terrorist threats in Africa and the attempts from existing and resurgent terrorist groups to link up across these regions," he explained.

"We cannot and should not turn a blind eye on this alarming trend and allow for the promising development efforts of African countries to be challenged by the spread of terrorism, and the GCTF should fully contribute to reinforcing the capacities in the continent," he underlined.

Morocco and the Netherlands were re-selected to assume the presidency of the Global Counterterrorism Forum for another two-year mandate.

Among the decisions taken during this meeting is the launch of a series of initiatives under the GCTF, including the initiative related to handling local violent extremists, run jointly by Morocco and the USA.

The meeting was attended by foreign ministers or representatives of member states as Spain, UK, Turkey, USA, France, Canada, Nigeria, Egypt, Qatar, KSA, Jordan, India, Indonesia, as well as UN representatives.

The GCTF is an informal, apolitical, multilateral counter-terrorism platform that was launched officially in New York in 2011, with the aim of strengthening capabilities in order to develop a strategic, long-term approach to counter terrorism and prevent the violent extremist ideologies that underpin it.

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